Hi Stella, I recently saw your message regarding the Palk's of Ashburton, and I think that there could be a family connection. I have the following in my family tree: Thomas Palk [father Walter Palk, mother Mary] Born 1 Aug. 1750 [Ashburton, UK] Married 30 Jan. 1777 in Madras to Catherine PELLING [bap. 04/10/1760 Madras/Died 1793 Ashburton, UK] Children: Catherine Palk [b. Madras] Robert Palk [b. Madras] Capt. Thomas Palk [b. Madras] Walter Palk* [b. Cape of Good Hope]
Last child Walter needs to be confirmed, as the record only shows the father's name of Thomas.
Also, Thomas Palk [the father] according to the India Office Records [online] appears to have a brother called Robert. If one works out the years of their birth, I believe that Walter Palk is Sir Robert Palk's brother, and that the Robert Palk who died in 1848 married to Mary Carrington, is in fact the son of Thomas Palk and Catherine Pelling, which gives us a family connection [through the Pelling family]. I have not yet found the actual records, but I believe that Walter Palk is the brother of Sir Robert Palk [first Governor of Madras][b. 1717 who married a lady by the surname of Vansittart].